Interiors: loft living
Thanks to a new refined industrial look harking back to the '80s and '90s, the urban loft living look is back. The Furniture Quarter in Abington has the look nailed!
Since watching Tom Hanks in Big sliding across the wooden floor of the coolest apartment I’ve ever seen, I’ve always had a slightly embarrassing love of loft living! I think it sprang from the whole ’80s yuppie vibe. Me a penniless school girl with a bad perm watching those young professional cool kids, earning loadsa cash and enjoying the cultural attractions of sophisticated urban life.
So guess what? Thanks to a new refined industrial look harking back to the retro ’80s and ’90s (crap, are the ’90s retro already?) the urban loft living look is back. So what exactly is loft living? It’s actually a popular concept in architecture, design and home decorating (think industrial spaces and contemporary apartments in a variety of styles). Real loft conversion designs are the redesigned factory buildings which are often decorated in minimalist style, but today loft ideas influence interior design and decorating in many other styles, creating spacious, airy and functional rooms in normal houses (the whole Scandi vibe really touches upon this too).
Loft ideas look really impressive, mixing different styles and turning homes and apartments into beautiful but also comfortable retreats. It’s a real mish mash of looks, which is why I think it’s a very flexible style for most of us! Indoor hammocks/mounted cycles/3 people game station areas can be combined with traditional living room furniture, exotic woods and contemporary wall clocks, giving a unique character to contemporary interior design and decor with eclectic charm (i.e. make the style suit who you are).
I popped along to Muddy fave, The Furniture Quarter to see if I could pick out a few pieces to bring the loft trend to life. These guys are really good at experimenting with trends in home design, enhancing traditional interior design and decor with bespoke furniture, unusual lighting and contemporary ideas.
This Porto range has a simplistic style and practical design that really lends itself to that cool, industrial look. Walnut veneers and brushed stainless steel, teamed with the distinctive look of concrete scream out loft-living (just add a table football and three giant bean bags : )
They’ve also got the aptly named Brooklyn and New York collections of sofas. Muted contemporary greys mixed with chrome and a corner sofa that will have grown men working overtime to have installed at home (check it out online, plus loads of sofas for under £1k).
For me, it’s all about combining traditional and contemporary materials and home furnishings, not throwing everything out and starting anew, it’s about adding on to what you already have. I’ve had my eyes on one of the scrumptious Thomas Kent Clocks, but I’m on a retail ban until I get rid of half of my wardrobe (slightly unfair I think you’ll agree. How can you ask a girl to choose between her interior furnishings and her wardrobe, pah)!
If you’re worried that contemporary/urban living can look too cold, here are my 4 top tips to warm it up.
- Add a throw or six. I am of the mind you can never have too many throws. Varying textures and colours (some neutral, some pops of primary. Scatter cushions can be chucked into the mix. The more the merrier.
- Pop coffee table books of varying sizes around the room. Don’t read them? All the better. Great to use as occasional tables and give the impression you’re spectacularly well read.
- Get the biggest, stripiest, most colourful rug you can find. You’ll never notice the wine stains and it will warm up the room whenever the sun hides behind the clouds (which admittedly could be all-year round)!
- Spot candles and lamps around the room and light them whenever you feel the need (even if your Dad’s voice in the back of your head always shouts out ‘what do you think this is, Blackpool Illuminations’.
So there you have it, loft living is back, and can look great almost anywhere, now all I need to do is sneak that clock in and pretend it’s been in my wardrobe for ages, tee hee!
For more details on these featured designs or just that clock I’m not allowed to buy, contact the The Furniture Quarter, 117 Abington Avenue, Northampton, NN1 4QB, Tel. 01604 711000